Sanders gets in heated exchange with reporter over anthem protests - MRCAESAR.COM

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Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Sanders gets in heated exchange with reporter over anthem protests


Sarah Huckabee Sanders
Getty Images

White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders on Tuesday had a heated exchange with a reporter who flatly told her that NFL players who kneel during the national anthem were not disrespecting the flag — despite President Trump’s insistence that they were.
“Is the president aware it’s not about disrespecting the flag?” American Urban Radio’s April Ryan asked Sanders, even though she had called on another reporter during a press briefing.
When Sanders tried to shut her off, the room grew unusually tense as Ryan, an African-American, doggedly persisted and other reporters gave her space, declining to interrupt.
“Answer that. It’s an underlying issue. There are black and brown soldiers that fight in the military as well who feel that taking a knee, bringing attention to police-involved shootings is something that this White House should deal with,” Ryan said.
“Is the president aware that taking the knee is about police-involved shootings?” she asked again.
“The president has made his position crystal clear and that it’s about,” Sanders began to answer before snapping at Ryan when she kept speaking.
“I let you rudely interrupt me and your colleague. I’m going to ask that you allow me to finish my answer. I would be happy to answer it if you would stop talking long enough to let me do that,” Sanders fired back.
“The president has made his position crystal clear on this topic. He feels strongly that standing for our national anthem is something that we should do, something that matters to what makes our country special and unique and what sets us apart,” she said.
“He’s not going to waver on that. He’s not going to apologize for it. And, frankly, more than 70 percent of Americans agree with him on that matter. If you go back to what the original intent was, this has been made a political argument of which the president is not going to back down from and he’s been clear on it,” she said, again trying to move to another reporter.
“April, I’ve addressed your question, I’m not going to continue to engage with you.”
The White House blasted the Philadelphia Eagles for abandoning “their...
NFL players, most of them African-Americans, have repeatedly said they are not protesting the flag or the troops but kneel in protest of police shootings of minorities and social injustice.
But Trump — who has told aides that he believes the racially tinged issue fires up his base — is expected to continue raising the issue as the midterm elections approach, according to AP.
The testy exchange with Ryan — who has aggressively pressed the Trump White House on issues involving race — came a day after Trump disinvited the Philadelphia Eagles from a White House ceremony celebrating their Super Bowl championship.
Instead, he hastily arranged a celebration in which a military band would play the anthem.
Other athletes mocked Trump’s move.
“I’m sure it wasn’t him uninviting the Eagles. I’m sure they didn’t want to go,” former Eagles wide receiver Terrell Owens told TMZ.
“How does he uninvite people that didn’t want to go? Come on Donald, let’s keep it real.”
NBA stars Stephen Curry and LeBron James — battling for the NBA championship — both said they’d skip any White house celebrations.
“I know no matter who wins this series, no one wants to get invited anyway,” James said at a news conference Tuesday. “It won’t be Golden State or Cleveland going.”
Curry, after he was relayed James’ thoughts, said, “I agree with ‘Bron.”
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